Civil War New York

43rd New York Infantry Civil War Letter Archive

43rd New York Infantry Civil War Letter Archive

43rd New York Infantry Civil War Letter Archive   43rd New York Infantry Civil War Letter Archive
Lot of 9 letters by Samuel Hoag, a young 18 year old Corporal who was wounded in action at Spotsylvania Court House. His letters here to his mother provide unusually detailed vignettes of life as a soldier, with descriptive content on the Battle of Fredericksburg. Dated 17 December 1862, Hoag writes from camp near Fredericksburg, in part, On Thursday the 11th we marched to the Rapahannock River with the intention of taking Fredericksburg but it is not taken yet. I have just passed through my first battle in safety, and a severe one it was as we lost about 5,000 men. I will now give you some accounts of the battle. We crossed the river on the 12th and marched towards the enemy who were on a hill in a strong position, while we were on the flats. The shells flew over us quite close wounding several in our regiment, several went very near us but we lay down flat and but two were hurt in our company, and they both with one shell.

There names were Isaac Stafford and Michael Wagonerthe former had his right leg shattered so that it had to be amputated the latter was only slightly wounded. The left wing drove the rebels some distance but were forced to fall back again.

We have been fighting for five days but on the evening of the 15th we recrossed the river and retreated. I do not know for what reason but I suppose the enemys works were too strong to be attacked. I suppose you think it is strange how men can stand coolly looking on when others are fighting, but it is so, I my self slept while the firing was going on others were cooking there victuals as if nothing was going on.

On 17 October 1862, Hoag writes about interacting with the enemy and a skirmish, relieved the 2nd Corps who were doing picket duty there we remained there a few days doing heavy picket duty within sight of the Rebels while there we had plenty of rebel news. The boys exchanged papers with the rebels and they exchanged Coffee for tobacco with them. I held no communication with them for I think it is wrong to hold any communication with traitors and enemys of my country. We had been doing picket but a few days when General Kilpatrick's Cavalry was attacked by the rebels who were trying to flank General Meade's army.

In the evening we commenced a retreat and marched all night and the next day with but a few hours restThe next morning we recrossed the river, dug a rifle pit and at about 3 oclock P. The gallant 6th Corps our regiment included advanced upon the enemy the Cavalry being in the advance and drove them a distance of five miles where we encamped in line of battle for the night but at midnight we commenced retreating again towards Centrevillethere has been some sharp fighting, but it is reported this morning that Lee is falling back. At Sun rise we have roll call which all are required to attend. We then have breakfast of hard Crackers & poor Coffee, we then have about an hours time to ourselves, we then have drill then dinner after dinner we have another drill at night.

We have dress parade or inspection, we then have supper of crackers and coffee, we do not live as well as the papers state, the government allows us a good living but speculators cheat us out of more than half our rations. It takes all our leisure time we have between drills to keep ourselves and our equipment cleanthere are soldiers now in this regiment whose wifes have been turned out of doors in Albany for want of the pay that has been due them these 6 months. In the next few letters Hoag writes about serving under both the government's youngest general, and also its head: we took up our line of march towards Robison Creek for the purpose of supporting Gen.

Custer's Raid to Charlottsvillewe will soon commence the summer campaign under command of General GrantI do not think you will have reason to condemn my conduct. I will do my duty as well as I can. Dont you remember you told me when I enlisted not to turn my back on an enemy, or act cowardly. I will remember what you told me and behave like a soldier. On 4 August 1864 while recuperating after his wound at the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House, Hoag writes about serving under General Grant, The principal news we have had lately is the repulse of Grantalthough it is nothing serious, nothing more than he experienced at Vicksburg, and on the first attack on Petersburg so I do not think it is best to be discouraged, but take the advice of a Soldier who has fought under him and knows some thing about him and his manner of fighting, and think that Petersburg will be taken soon and will soon be followed by the fall of Richmond.

Grant will never be defeated if the President gives him all the support he needs" Signed "Yours Affectionately Samuel Hoag like many of his letters. Nice collection of letters by a devoted son and patriot, in very good condition, most with original covers. Also with near complete transcriptions. The item "43rd New York Infantry Civil War Letter Archive" is in sale since Friday, January 31, 2020.

This item is in the category "Collectibles\Militaria\Civil War (1861-65)\Original Period Items\Correspondence, Mail". The seller is "n8sautographs" and is located in Los Angeles, California. This item can be shipped worldwide.

43rd New York Infantry Civil War Letter Archive   43rd New York Infantry Civil War Letter Archive